Sunday, August 31, 2014

DIY Climbing Cardboard Circus Men Toys

I love making interactive toys for Chuck. There's something immensely gratifying about creating something that's beautiful, functional, and fun.... out of recyclable items!  Recently I made these two cardboard climbing circus men toys for Chuck.  You pull on the strings and the men race to the top.

Cardboard Climbing Circus Strong Men Toys

DIY Toys:  Make Climbing Circus Men Toys!

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Hee hee.  Do you dig their leotards, chest hair, and handlebar mustache?  Yup.  These manly men exude quite a bit of style, don't you think?

Ok.  Let's get making!

Friday, August 29, 2014

Shape Touch and Find Game

Now that Chuck is almost 3 I'm trying to do more educational activities with him.  Besides learning our numbers, we're also working on identifying different shapes.  Here's a fun shape activity that we've recently been doing together.        

Let's learn about shapes!


Shape Touch and Find Game:  A great way to teach shapes and math to little kids

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Early childhood mathematics education is something I feel quite strongly about.  Before I was a mommy, I was working on my doctorate degree in education. Although I never finished writing my dissertation (for reasons that you can about here),  I did spend  many years observing and studying how preschool children learn mathematics.  I also had the wonderful opportunity to work on a research-based preschool math curriculum called  Big Math For Little Kids.

This Touch and Find Shape game is one of my favorites from that curriculum.  It's a great activity because it helps young children to learn the number of sides and corners in shapes in a really fun and interactive way. 

Let's play the touch and find shape game!


Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Magic Fizzy "Sand!"

Once upon a time there was a mom who found herself with a very bored child.  He didn't want to play with any of his toys.  He didn't want to play outside.  And he certainly did not want to do any crafts.  Finding herself at her wits end, this mom pulled out 2 ingredients from cupboard and within minutes, whipped up several batches of wonderful smelling Magic Fizzy "Sand."  She then gave her child the sand and he played and played. After he grew tired of the activity, magic mom waved her magic wand and poof!  The sand began to bubble and fizz, delighting the child once more.  And they all lived happily ever after.

Ok.  Full admission time... I was that mom.  And yes, I found myself with a grumpy child.  And yes, this magic "sand" ended up entertaining him for over half an hour (which as we all know, is like years in little kid time.)

Let's Make Magic Fizzy "Sand!"

Super easy and fun activity:  Make magic fizzy "sand" from 2 ingredients.  Let the kids play and then add water to make the sand fizz and bubble!  Cool science and sensory activtity.
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If you find yourself with a super bored or grouchy child, then this activity is for you.  Magic "Sand" is easy to make, smells wonderful, and really does fizz and bubble with water.

Wanna know how I made it?  Keep reading!

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Homemade Finger painted Starry Night

I love Van Gogh's artwork.  The colors, the movement, the textures... wow, wow, wow.  How does someone even do that?  Yowzers.  Gosh, did he make the world so much more beautiful with his art.  *Happy sigh*  Ok, ok... I'm back.  Let's get to today's post!  Chuck and I have explored great artwork in the past by making collages inspired by Matisse and super easy abstract artwork.  So I thought it was high time we tried our hand at making some artwork inspired by Van Gogh.   Except that instead of using real paints... we used some homemade finger paints!  


Collaborative Art Project:  Finger Painted Starry Night!


Finger Paint the Classics:  Make this 3 ingredient homemade finger paint and then paint Van Gogh's Starry Night with your preschooler!
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For months now I kept seeing Kidzaw Master Art Kits pop up everywhere.  (Have you heard of them?  They're kits that provide kids with all the materials necessary to make artwork inspired the great artists.)  I saw great results with older children and toyed with the idea of buying one to try out.  But Chuck's only 2 and I'll be honest, his affinity for arts and crafts varies daily.  Yurp.  So I came up with this cheaper alternative.  The finger paint is super easy to make and you could adapt the design to recreate any of Van Gogh's artwork.

So let's begin!


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